Tuscan eyes £100m loan book in its second year

Tuscan Capital intends to double its loan book to around £100m by the end of its second year.

Last month, the ambitious lender celebrated its first year in business, during which it lent just under £60m since its launch.

In an exclusive interview with Bridging & Commercial, Colin Sanders, CEO at Tuscan Capital (pictured above), gave us a review of its inaugural year’s lending figures and a first look at its targets for the year ahead.

Tuscan Capital
At Tuscan’s new offices in Grosvenor Gardens

In 12 months, the bridging lender completed 72 transactions via 25 different brokers — a repeat business strategy which Colin doesn’t expect to see changing this year.

And while eight deals which were written in its first few months have already redeemed, its loan book as of February stood just a few pounds short of £50m.

With 70% of its business in its first year consisting of straightforward bridging finance, roughly 10% of the portfolio was mixed-use and semi-commercial bridging— products which the lender launched in September last year.

It’s heavy refurbishment business, a product which it launched in October, made up circa 20% of its lending when grouped together with development refinance.

This could also include final build if necessary.

“For us, if the roof’s on, and the windows [are] in, it’s wind and water tight, [therefore] we are happy to provide the money to do the final fix,” said Colin.

Tuscan’s average loan and term stands at £845,000 and nine months respectively and, geographically, is doing two-thirds of its business in the South East of England.

“I am pleased to say we have got a third that is nationwide, but predominantly a lot of our business is still in the South East.”

Colin told B&C that he expected Tuscan to have a loan book of £100m at the end of its second year, a figure he regarded as “very achievable” considering it has already completed £6m so far in March and has a live pipeline of 29 deals worth £25m.

This could potentially be boosted further as Tuscan eyes a forward flow arrangement which it hopes to have in place by the middle of this year.

This would enable the lender to offer something complementary to its existing business.

Colin confirmed that a forward flow facility of between £25m-50m was currently being considered.

To ensure it can facilitate its long-term growth plans, Tuscan recently moved to new offices in Grosvenor Gardens and has now grown its team from six people (at launch) to nine.

Its latest hire, Nicole Evariste, joined last month as a sales and marketing analyst and will be providing logistical and analytical strength to Tuscan’s broker-facing sales and marketing capabilities.

Nicole told B&C that it was an exciting time to be part of a new venture which has “significant growth plans” for the future.

“Working alongside a deeply experienced team, I’m looking forward to playing an active part in helping the business achieve its objectives over the coming year,” she said.

While Tuscan has completed an impressive amount of business in its first year, Colin told B&C that its biggest achievement was the sector’s reaction and that it was seen as “one of the players in the market”.

He admitted that he was initially worried about launching from a standing start and whether or not it was able to get itself a “seat at the table” within 12 months.

“And we have,” Colin said, adding, “so that’s probably the biggest achievement.”

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